Summary: When there's nothing else you can do… One shot a treat to Seeing Through Tears readers.
He can't help the way he feels when her eyes open.
"It doesn't hurt that much."
Lies. He's heard them all before. She can't hide the pink tearstains marking her face, the torment in her silver green orbs or the blood soaking through her shirt.
His hand reaches out to touch her, but her intake of breath and flinch away stop him. It doesn't hurt that much. He lies, he knows better then to tell himself that.
But that won't stop him.
He gently touches her shoulder, and this time, she lets him. Her face is veiled behind her frazzled hair as she tries to hide her pink cheeks. Her bottom lip caught between her teeth and eyelashes fluttering like little butterflies, he can't remember ever seeing something so lovely.
"Let me fix it."
"It's fine." She places her hand on his as to remove it from her, and he allows her to, because the last thing he wants is to disrespect her.
But he won't keep from telling her the truth. "It's not fine."
She sighs, "Seth, Stop."
He will never understand why she tries to hide it so much. Every time he gets close, she shoves him away. It was part of her allure, maybe, that kept him coming back. Every time she tried to destroy him with a look in her eyes that clearly cried, 'get away from me,' he couldn't help but try to get even closer. She is such a beautiful, mysterious, tormented creature.
With slight frustration, he regards her. There is that pleading look in her eyes as she clutches desperately onto the hem of her stained shirt.
She just needs something to hold onto.
Slowly, he reaches out and takes her hand. He can hear her breath catch in her throat as he intertwines her fingers with his. She smears blood on his skin as she squeezes his hand. But he can only see one thing. Trust. His smile is gentle and eyes soft as he releases her and lifts up her shirt. He grabs the facecloth draping over the towel rack and runs it under the tap. Jake will kill him later when he realizes he can't wash the crimson out of the sea foam fabric, but Seth just couldn't walk away from her now to grab a ratty old rag; not even for a second.
She grips his bicep and digs her nails into his skin as he washes away the blood, wincing every time the rough fabric touches the wound. But she's strong, he notes… or maybe just too damn stubborn, as she fights to let herself go and lean against him. He knows it isn't a burden he needs to take from her. It's a burden he has to take from her.
The sadness in his eyes breaks through as he watches her face contort from pain. She's too innocent. A hand ran through her hair, which was damp with sweat. This is the last person in the world that deserved this.
"Seth." The way she says his name breaks his heart. It's shaky and uncertain; fear rings through like the alarm that wakes him each morning.
He tells her what she needs to hear.
Another lie, he knows, but one day it wouldn't be. He'd make sure of that.
Her lips part and she begins to protest. The facecloth is completely forgotten in that moment. Her lips are swollen, moist and dark from her constant habit of biting them. A constant magnet, he thinks, stroking her bottom lip. She trembles under the tender touch and tilts her face closer. All resolve crumbles as her hot breath gently caresses his thumb. He meets her completely, dipping his head to capture the silken pads of flesh beneath his.
It'll be okay,he promises her silently, cupping her face with his hand. The way she rests her hand over his chest, over his heart, tells him in some way, she knows this too.
A/N – I Re-discovered this, this morning and just had to finish it. It's an apology for taking so long to update the story, which I still plan to update. I've just been working so much, and it wears me out. Today was my day off and I woke up early to work on some STT. I'm still not willing to give up on it, and I hope you guys will come check it out again when I finally am able to sit and focus on it for hours at a time.
So just enjoy this treat for now. I know a lot of you have wanted to know what it's like to be in Seth's head, and so now you know. This is actually my first attempt at not doing past tense, so if some has slipped through, just let me know in a review.